Dad worked out of Station 109s LAFD, he was on the very first mountain patrol and worked huge brush fires, including a very famous one and the largest in the day, the Bel Aire fire. The Bel Air fire burned homes and brush, and was recorded on a show called “Disasters” in the 1960s which showed my Dad silhouetted on his tractor with fire burning in the background. We didn’t see this show until after my Dad died in 1971 following injuries he sustained while working fires in the aftermath of the Sylmar earthquake at the end of March that year. I was eleven years old. My big brother was thirteen, my sister was eight and my younger brother was only five years old. Our family was never the same, in spite of all my mom’s efforts to keep things as “normal” as possible. She spent the rest of her life trying to do the impossible. She was an angel on earth, to say the least and now, since October, 29, 2011, she’s an angel in Heaven with my dear Dad and Jesus.

Mom And I on Christmas in 2009 – Together as always

This is how I acquired the recipe: Since Dad’s death in 1971, the fire department and anyone who is on the department have always been very dear to us. Through many years – since 1954 when Dad was appointed fireman for LAFD, Mom saved anything that had to do with the department and its firemen, including the Grapevine magazine. This recipe comes to us from one of the Grapevines that Mom had stashed away because it contained news about a new Fallen Firefighters’ Memorial in Hollywood, California where my dad’s name is written on the wall of the Fallen.

My Dad – My Hero #1 Always and Forever; Never Forgotten

How the recipe ended up in The Fireman’s Grapevine Magazine: A fire captain’s grandmother used to make this pie crust while he, as a young boy, watched and learned. Thank goodness he had the whereto-with to write it down, and even better, share it in one of the Fireman’s Grapevine magazines. Not only is it decadent and delicious, it doesn’t require the time consuming rolling out of the dough into a perfect 9″ circle… it can be made very quickly using only a pie plate and two (clean) hands which is very convenient – especially in case of a fire bell or other such pressing issue at hand. Enjoy!

Fireman’s Pie Crust Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 C. flour
  • 3 Tbsp milk
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 C oil


Place all ingredients in 8″ or 9″ pie plate.  Mix well using hands.  Pat into shape to form crust inside pan – flute edges if desired.  If needing a baked crust, line the crust with doubled aluminum foil, bake at 425 for about ten minutes.

a fireman's secret to the best tasting pie crust ever
Just use your hands and mix it up right in the pie plate
Best ever, easiest pie crust recipe
Kids can help you with this
My pecan pie: I guess it was good

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